Duration: 2-3 hours
Price Guide: 3 RMB
This is a modern-style tour or you could call it a skyscrapers tour. If you like city views, do not miss this tour. You will feel like you’re a part of modern and fashionable Beijing.
Yonganli subway station
Coming out from Yonganli subway station, you will find yourself in the Guiyou Department Store.
The Yonganli subway station was built inside of Guiyou Department Store. You won’t miss this store because you have to pass through it. It is an old and famous department store, which is known particularly for its range of shoes and bags. But please remember, you cannot bargain in this department store. Guiyou Department Store is the start of Beijing new CBD.
After shopping in the Guiyou Department Store, walk backward. If you see a Starbucks Coffee shop on your left hand side, it means you’re heading in the right direction. Keep walking in this direction for about 20 minutes; you will see part of a crossover bridge. On your left hand side, you will see the old symbol of Beijing CBD, the World Trade Centre.
The World Trade Centre is one of the eldest skyscrapers in Beijing CBD. Beijing CBD was re-planned by the Beijing government at 2003. Before that, the CBD boundary was very vague. The World Trade Centre is a chocolate-coloured twin building. You won’t miss it as it’s the only chocolate-coloured building in the CBD area.
The buildings opposite the World Trade Centre are called Jianwai SOHO.
They were invested in by China’s famous real-estate businessman Pan Shiyi. Jianwai SOHO is famous in the Beijing CBD because it comprises more than 20 buildings all built in the same style. Each building in Jianwai SOHO has at least 50 levels. The style of the whole buildings is simple, modern. All the buildings are white. So when you see an area of white buildings, you know you are in Jianwai SOHO.
After visit Jianwai SOHO, don’t move. Just stand at the corner of this crossroad.
The place you are standing is the centre of Beijing CBD. It’s a transport centre, including subway, buses and private cars. It’s also the centre of business. It’s full of business buildings at the four corners of the crossroad. The rentals are also the highest, up to almost 20,000 RMB per square. Some of them are rented in American dollars.
Crossing the street, you can wait for bus 412 at the bus stop opposite to Jianwai SOHO. Or you can keep walking along in the direction of World Trade Centre. I suggest you walk because it is very easy to get lost in this area. Keep walking for about 15 minutes; you will see a light-blue glass skyscraper standing at the corner of another crossroad. That’s Jingguang Centre.
Jingguang Centre was built in the 1980s by a Japanese architect. It was the city’s first building designed by a foreign architect. It was, for a while, the most modern and highest skyscraper in Beijing. After that, there are many skyscrapers broke that record, but Jingguang Centre will always be the first.
If you are facing Jingguang Centre, keep walking along on your left hand side. When you reach another crossroad, you will see a huge department store – the Blue Island Department Store – at the opposite corner.
Blue Island Department Store was the first department store in CBD area and was built in 1990. Now Blue Island Department Store is a pretty expensive store – and you cannot bargain in it.